Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Tom Butler Tells Baker City Part Of The Story

Baker City Herald; June 12, 2007; Issue23
"Tax proposals shouldn't fly, Butler thinks
Mike Ferguson,

Mike and I know each other pretty well and I have reason to trust his reportage, so here's Rep Butler as I derived him from Mike's report. Don't blame Mike for my stuff, I'll use quotes if anybody is getting quoted.

First up, I don't think Tom has ever seen a tax break for big business or wealthy individuals he doesn't like. Butler opposes raising the $10 corporate minimum tax, a level he admits is low, but he does want you to know that corporate filing fees have been raised 500% since the $10 minimum which began in the 1930s. Yes, 500% no doubt sounds like quite the bash on corporations - except the fee is $50. How do I know that? I pay both. Of the price to satisfy government to allow me to be in business this amounts to almost exactly 1%. Me, 1%; oh boy am I impressed.

He doesn't like the boost in weight and mile tax on trucks that operate in Oregon "The increase would make Oregon the nation's most expensive state to operate a commercial tractor-trailer, he said." Has Tom looked at the roads lately? Sure, studs are hard on the roads, but check which lane is thrashed, the right one. The truck one. Chains aren't exactly nice to roads, either. The most expensive in the nation? Let me see, deep frost penetrations, lots of mountains, lots of miles with essentially nothing there thus lots of mileage. Oh my, I pay about $240 for tags for a 1950 COE (cab over engine) 18,000 pound gross dump truck that gets the kind of miles you might expect in a year - few.

He doesn't like the additional cigarette tax, he says it would push people to Other Tobacco Products site and OTP isn't taxed. He's a non-smoker - "no friend of the tobacco industry," which I might believe. What is galling is that he uses such an argument rather than the fact that the tax will fall on a lower income group with few numbers. He is perfectly willing to make the few numbers argument for the rich, I've heard him do it. And the simple fact that these are Oregonian's children, no smokers. About 60,000 of Oregon's uninsured children are eligible for Oregon Health Plan coverage, but, "their parents just aren't signing them up." He says. ( I think the tax stinks, I smoke, but for the reasons I put forward it stinks )

I'm afraid this guy represents me, oh well...

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